By Sarah G., SCNM Admissions Representative
As one of the premier ND schools in the country, Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine is situated in the Valley of the Sun in the beautiful Arizona desert. With its affordability, good job market, abundance of learning opportunities, and beautiful weather, it’s no wonder why so many naturopathic medical students and alumni prefer to call Arizona home! In fact, Bankrate recently named Phoenix one of America’s best places to live in 2021. Here are just a few reasons why Arizona is the best place to study naturopathic medicine.
When it comes to practicing naturopathic medicine, Arizona has one of the widest scopes of practice in the country (if not the widest), which also allows our program to be very comprehensive. Our students benefit from an in-depth learning experience with a variety of patient experiences, from local community clinics to our very own medical centers situated right on campus. Both our Medical Center and Neil Riordan Center for Regenerative Medicine provide unique and valuable learning experiences to students, including clinic rotations and extra mentorships through our honors program. And as an ND in Arizona, you will be able to practice acupuncture, IV therapy, physical medicine, minor surgery, and so much more.
Arizonans are a friendly bunch, and even though Phoenix is a big city, the people are generally relaxed, warm, and open to new ideas. There is a vibrant, multi-cultural environment inPhoenix, with many outdoor cultural, music and food festivals held throughout the year. This laid-back atmosphere and friendly environment allow for a medical school experience that is perhaps a little less stressful and a bit more fun. And with our campus located just a few miles from Arizona State University, it provides a great higher learning environment, rich with opportunities for collaboration and partnership.
With nearly 300 days of sunshine per year, Phoenix is an outdoor lover’s mecca. The Valley of the Sun is surrounded by mountains, making it a great area for hiking, mountain biking, and kayaking (yes, we even have rivers and lakes). As a busy medical school student, thatvitamin D is so important! And although the summers can be hot, the rest of the year is gorgeous. While much of the country is shoveling snow, our students are hiking Camelback Mountain or having a picnic at one of our beautiful city parks.
It seems that new healthy restaurants, yoga studios, and farmer’s markets are popping up all the time. As holistic health and integrative medicine become more popular in Arizona and around the country, there is a growing demand for NDs in a variety of settings throughout the state.
Because there are so many benefits to living in Arizona, many of our alumni choose to stay here after they graduate, even if they are originally from other parts of the country. This provides a great resource for our students, who benefit from the experience and mentorship of our local alumni. And despite the large number of NDs in Arizona, the market is not saturated, especially given the fact that Arizona is such a fast-growing state, with many people (i.e., potential patients) from California and other parts of the county moving here every day.
Despite being the fifth largest city in the U.S., Phoenix is an amazingly affordable place to live compared with other cities that have ND programs. Apartments and median home prices are lower than other large cities. As a medical school student in Phoenix, you’ll have to budget your money, but spending an evening out at dinner or a cultural event won’t have to break the bank. With a thriving job market, lower cost of living, and plenty of free ways to enjoy the beautiful outdoors, Arizona is the perfect place to begin your journey to a rewarding career as an ND!